Brain Batter

Rainn Wilson’s SoulPancake explores life’s big questions for the under-40 crowd

Thousands of years ago, Greek philosophers established the cool factor—despite their togas and sandals—of dealing with life’s big questions. Last century, Monty Python ramped up the coolness—and comedy—with their seminal work The Meaning of Life. But neither group—nor any of the intellectual heavyweights who over the ages joined in the... Read more

Mutants Through Time

Newton Thomas Sigel, ASC, uses ALEXA M cameras to create a 3D “inbetweequel” for X-Men: Days of Future Past

For the millions of fans who might have been parsing the title of the new X-Men film, X-Men: Days of Future Past, and looking for hidden meaning and clues to the latest adventure, director Bryan Singer has a few answers. "It’s not a reboot," he has said, noting that the film features many of the same characters and actors—including... Read more

Broke Superheroes

Cinematographer Joel Deutsch sticks to high standards for capturing the web series Caper

We hear about it all of the time: high production values on a low budget. What does that really mean? For veteran TV writer and producer Amy Berg (Eureka, The 4440 and Leverage), who wrote the script for Caper, along with cocreator Mike Sizemore, it meant reimagining that most popular of genres, the superhero story. According to Berg, the idea for the... Read more

Welcome To The Grindhouse

Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and Drafthouse Films break the film distribution mold

In an age of mass production and faceless corporations, Texas-based Alamo Drafthouse Cinema and Drafthouse Films are the cinema chain and entertainment brand equivalent of a microbrewery or artisanal bakery, serving up tasty treats—both literally and figuratively—for a discerning audience that craves a more handcrafted approach. Headquartered in... Read more

A Day In The Life

Shot by cinematographer Jeffrey C. Mygatt, 24 ’s Jack Bauer is back to Live Another Day

Debuting in November 2001, 24 was perfectly positioned to capture the post-9/11 zeitgeist. While not as cerebral as the UK’s Spooks (known stateside as MI-5), which began airing a scant few months later, the FOX series offered up visceral excitement that kept it dominating the chat around watercoolers for much of its eight-season run. In its new... Read more

White Lightning

Moonshine Kingdom is the first natively shot 4K movie to stream in 4K

Although 4K-shot productions are heating up, we’re still in purgatory in terms of 4K distribution into living rooms. As you probably know, movie and television studios move at a slower pace than camera manufacturers, and at the moment, typical delivery specifications for VFX and theatrical exhibition are currently at 2K while deliverables for... Read more

Boozy Tales

DP Blake McClure channels film history to create the past for Comedy Central’s Drunk History

Director of photography Blake McClure was hired for Drunk History at a party, while drinking. That seems logical for a show that involves getting its lead actor drunk to recite an important historical event. Okay, it didn’t happen exactly like that, but neither do the historical reimaginings in the web short-turned-Comedy Central series. McClure... Read more

Super Charged

With the Canon EOS C500, cinematographer Shane Hurlbut, ASC, delivers an immersive behind-the-wheel experience for Need for Speed

The title of the new DreamWorks Pictures movie Need for Speed says it all—fast cars, fast women and plenty of action and burning rubber along the way. Based on the hugely successful racing video game franchise created by Electronic Arts, with over 140 million copies sold so far, Need for Speed taps into what makes the American myth of the open road... Read more

TV V.2.0

Led by streaming and binge viewing, television is going through a revolution

For the first time in half a century, television has a new model. From the ashes of appointment TV viewing, streaming has risen as a means to most likely reach coveted millennials, as well as other generations. Whether the device is an OTT (over-the-top) TV screen, laptop or mobile phone, original content—from more sources than ever—is king. At... Read more

Independent’s Day

The 2014 Sundance Film Festival adapts to the digital democracy

Martin Scorsese recently wrote an open letter to his daughter in an Italian news magazine about the current state of movies. In the letter, he sees a bright future ahead for her due to the current low cost of making a movie. "You can get beautiful images with affordable cameras," he wrote. "You can record sound. You can edit and mix and... Read more